Anna Nicole Smith’s 5-month-old daughter Dannielynn will remain in the care of Howard K. Stern – for now – after a judge in the Bahamas adjourned the custody battle until next month.
On Monday, Smith’s estranged mother, Virgie Arthur, and Smith’s former boyfriend, Larry Birkhead, both fought for custody of the little girl, but the judge made no ruling, leaving Dannielynn with Stern, who is listed as the baby’s father on her birth certificate, the Associated Press reports,
A lawyer for Birkhead told reporters after the hearing: “We anticipate DNA testing” to be done, but would not comment further.
Before going inside the Supreme Court building in Nassau, Birkhead, , who also claims to be the baby’s father, said about Dannielynn, “I hope to get to see her and have her soon.” (TMZ.com reports that Birkhead has already met the baby and is in negotiations with Stern over a custody deal.)
John O’Quinn, a lawyer for Arthur said that Smith’s mother asked to see her granddaughter, but the judge said she will need permission from Stern first.
“We want a visit with the baby and Stern won’t let us,” Quinn said.
In a related development on Monday, an appeals court in Florida granted Arthur’s request to stay last week’s decision on the disposition of Smith’s body. The petition argued that Stern had no standing in the matter and that Smith’s remains cannot be moved to the Bahamas for burial until the court hears a challenge from Arthur.
Smith, 39, died Feb. 8.